ENT assessment in the integrated management of candidate for (maxillary) sinus lift.

L. Pignataro, M. Mantovani, S. Torretta, G. Felisati, G. Sambataro

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


As stated at the 1996 Consensus Conference at Babson College, a (maxillary) sinus lift is a "safe and predictable" procedure for increasing alveolar bone height in the postero-superior alveolar regions in order to allow oral rehabilitation and restore masticatory function by means of the insertion of a dental implant even in the case of an atrophic maxilla. However, the procedure has a well-known impact on the delicate homeostasis of the maxillary sinus: the concomitant presence of systemic, naso-sinusal or maxillary sinus disease may favour the development of post-operative complications (particularly maxillary rhino-sinusitis), which can compromise a good surgical outcome. On the basis of these considerations, the management of sinus lift candidates should include the careful identification of any situations contraindicating the procedure and, if naso-sinusal disease is suspected, a clinical assessment by an ear, nose and throat specialist, which should include nasal endoscopy and, if necessary, a computed tomography scan of the maxillofacial district, particularly the ostio-meatal complex. This first preventive-diagnostic step should be dedicated to detect presumably irreversible and potentially reversible contraindications to a sinus lift, whereas the second (preventive-therapeutic) step is aimed at correcting (mainly with the aid of endoscopic surgery) such potentially reversible ear, nose and throat contraindications as middle-meatal anatomical structural impairments, phlogistic-infective diseases and benign naso-sinusal neoplasms the removal of which achieves naso-sinusal homeostasis recovery, in order to restore the physiological drainage and ventilation of the maxillary sinus. The third (diagnostic-therapeutic) step is only required if mainly infective and sinusal complications arise after sinus lift surgery, and is aimed at ensuring early diagnosis and prompt treatment of maxillary rhino-sinusitis in order to avoid, if possible, implant loss and, in particular, the related major complications. The purpose of this report is to describe these three steps in detail within the context of a multidisciplinary management of sinus lift in which otorhinolaryngological factors may be the key to a successful outcome.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)110-119
Number of pages10
JournalActa Otorhinolaryngologica Italica
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2008

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Otorhinolaryngology


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